Recently I was interviewed by Michael Ellsberg for his upcoming book on self-taught billionaires (no, I am not one!). He asked me, as many have before him, what prompted me to become a monk for 7 years. I gave my usual reply, which is that I found the pain and suffering of the world overwhelming. At the time, I felt that if I could meditate really, really hard, I’d somehow reduce some of the staggering human suffering I’d both witnessed and felt.
Today I “got” it though – the real, deep, subterranean reason why I took such serious vows at age 17. I was working with Lin Morel, one of my advisors, and a few hours after our working session it hit me.
The reason I took my vows 30 years ago, pledging my life to God and agreeing to great self-sacrifice, was because I knew I could succeed at it. You see, I know how to love God. I am a fool for God and happy to say it, absolutely.
Now here’s the dark underbelly: Yes, I knew I could succeed at being a monk. But I didn’t think I could succeed at anything else.
I’d grown up, as many of you who read this have, being told I was a disappointment. I’d heard many times that I wasn’t worth much and wouldn’t amount to much. I bought into this lie for quite some time, albeit at some subconscious level… longer than I’d like to admit (!).
Eventually, I chose a different path and decided to break my vows as a monk. By then I felt called to a different kind of freedom. My creativity called me to build businesses and make millions and give away millions, which ultimately has led to my helping others do the same.
People come to me with all sorts of beliefs, and more often than not, at some level, they feel that they too aren’t worth much. They can’t succeed, or worse, they’ll try and won’t succeed.
I’m writing today to say don’t buy in. Don’t believe it. You ARE worth something. You are worth A LOT. I’m a high school dropout who thought I could only love God. I believed that I couldn’t really do anything else of value, and people certainly wouldn’t pay me for it.
If I can build multiple businesses, make millions, have a deeply fulfilling life — you can certainly do so too. Think of the most “worthy” or “valuable” person you know. Since we’re all made of the same stuff (God), then YOU are worth every bit as much as they are. You’re courageous, magnificent, valuable and MIGHTY.
I wish I knew this when I was a kid, a teen, a 20 something, a 30 something. It took me a long long time to get it. But heck, one learns when they’re ready. And maybe I’m a slow learner. I am a fool, after all.
Christine Comaford, The 7 Figure Business Builder
NY Times Best Selling Author